Jordyn Ingram

The 100th Black Sheep

 

 

It’s taken me 14 years to learn how to style my hair

17 years to realize I am beautiful, despite society having no role models to spare

And 6 years to know that I stand out 

despite this town filling me with pain, cruel words and doubt 


 

I have never felt more out of place 

Never felt more alone

Never longed to know more about myself and others like me

More than this place has ever shown 


 

The lack of representation 

The lack of concern

The lack of participation of residents

Eager and willing to learn

Of the struggles faced by a different race


 

It’s not their fault

No one looks like me

No one walks like me

No one talks like me

But I speak to those who’ve allowed

Their ignorance to transform into arrogance

To those whose parents have taught them

To be belligerent towards 

People     like      me 


 

I tell them 

“It doesn’t matter your political affiliation

It doesn’t take much to realize that this country

Has yet to function as one nation

Let alone under God

Clearly divisible

And liberty and justice for

Who?

Don’t tell me “all lives matter” 

When “all” didn’t mean “all” when Jefferson said

 “All men were created equal”


 

Don’t tell me “all lives matter” when

“All” didn’t mean “all” when our Founding Fathers said

“Liberty and justice for all”

 

How can you call yourself a follower of Christ

When you forget the cause for his sacrifice 

For all people 

Not just the rich

Not just the beautiful 

Not just the white

 

So don’t tell me “all lives matter” when he left his 99

Just to save his one 


 

How dare you question the authenticity of my ancestors' pain? 

How dare you mock the music my ancestors wrote to recover?

How dare you do this 

Yet exploit my culture for personal gain?


 

I don’t expect you to understand 

I don’t expect you to feel

I do expect you to listen

And recognize my suffering is real

And I expect you to do what it is that you can to help those who look like me heal


 

Because at the end of the day

It’s taken me 14 years to learn how to style my hair

17 years to realize I am beautiful, despite society having no role models to spare

And 6 years to know that I stand out 

Despite this town filling me with pain, cruel words and doubt 


 

I know I can succeed

I know I can finally be the bird that Maya Angelou once freed

I know I can help the strange fruits hanging from the Southern trees

And I know one day I will be just as powerful as Kapernick’s knee

Tel:  203.313.9335

 

 loveartplayct@gmail.com

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